Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Beauty is Agony - Radium

Tho-Radia...For "radiant" beauty!

The year is 2012 AD, women will do all sorts of dangerous things in the pursuit of beauty, we nip, we tuck, we hide all for vanity.
People have been paralysed (or worse) by unnecessary surgeries, blinded by improperly made contact lenses and recently a big news story has been about rupturing breast implants.
This is nothing new, vanity has been one of our greatest downfalls for a long time, perhaps for most of time and so I decided to do this series of blog posts on some of the dangerous beauty essentials of the past.

"An ever flowing fountain of youth and beauty" is what the radium beauty creams and powders promised, "Rays revitalise and energise all living tissue."
In the 1920's radium was big business, it was added to everything from coco powder to condoms, in the big business that was women's beauty radium was added to moisturisers, anti-wrinkle creams, talc, shampoos, soaps and face powders.

Tho-Radia (so called because it's main ingredients were a mix of Thorium Chloride and Radium Bromide) was one of the most popular and played very heavily on the name of one of it's creators (Alfred Curie, who was not related to Marie...But what the public didn't know couldn't hurt them...Just slowly poison them...)
Shockingly Tho-Radia was available right up until the 1960's when radium was deemed far to dangerous to use in beauty products...What is it that radium causes I hear you ask?
Well radium is a carcinogenic substance, it can cause a whole host of beautiful side affects such as anaemia, cancer and birth defects.
And the great news is that the effects of radium build up over the years, so imagine what it must have been like for those poor souls that used it for half of their lives only to discover their coco was giving them cancer?
It makes some of the ingredients in the beauty products I use now seem a lot less scary!

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